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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all itâ?TMs still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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New Passages Paperback – May 28, 1996


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1 edition (May 28, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345404459
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345404459
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #75,929 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

The author's previous blockbuster, Passages (LJ 5/15/76), introduced us all to the term "midlife crisis." In this sequel, Sheehy takes us beyond the midlife crisis to examine later life stages, with a short update on young adulthood in the 1990s. In a few ways, this is a better book than its predecessor. Sheehy pays closer attention to the influence of history on the life course of individuals. She also addresses the main criticism that social scientists have made of her work?that large-scale studies have shown no evidence that most people go through the life stages that she describes?by explaining that people should go through these "passages" and that everyone who doesn't is "walking dead." These improvements aside, her prose still sounds like that of a second-rate astrologer, her advice is often contradictory, and her adulation of famous personalities verges on embarrassing. Nevertheless, this is a "critic-proof" book?if you haven't already done so, order multiple copies to satisfy reader demand.
-?Mary Ann Hughes, Neill P.L., Pullman, Wash.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Sheehy's Passages (1976), in which she counseled thirtysomethings about the onset of midlife, went straight to the top of most best-seller lists, and her last book, The Silent Passage (1992), in which she schlepped women through menopause, did almost as well, despite the fact that females had been navigating the change of life for a millennium or so without Sheehy's help. Rapidly running out of passages, Sheehy now takes the obvious next step: edging her loyal readers, now entrenched in midlife, to the precipice and helping them face their mortality. Arguing that middle life is the "most unrevealed portion of adult life" (not once the Boomers dig in), Sheehy is here to tell you that the years from 45 to 65 are "not the stagnant, depressing downward slide we have always assumed they would be." Although she intends this book to be a "gift" to her anxious readers, it mostly fails. Before hearing about middle age's upside, we must wend our way through seemingly endless pages about women losing their spouses, men losing their jobs (to say nothing of their hair), and both men and women contracting enough diseases to make even the hardiest souls hurry in for a checkup. There is some good news. Women who make it to 65 can expect to live to 85, and if they've survived divorce or widowhood in midlife, they come to enjoy their own independence. Still, the overriding sense of this book, whether Sheehy admits it or not, is that everybody gets hit, everybody gets hurt. You don't need passage counseling to know that, and if you don't have the inner strength to endure, you might not even get to enjoy those upbeat nuggets Sheehy has gleaned from her surveys. Expect the usual demand; for whatever reason, this passage gambit sells Ilene Cooper --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

More About the Author


Gail Sheehy is the world-renowned author of seventeen books, most notably the New York Times best-seller Passages, named one of the ten most influential books by the Library of Congress and which has been translated into twenty-eight languages.

Her latest book, DARING: My Passages, is a memoir available now for preorder; September 2014 from HarperCollins.

As a literary journalist, Sheehy was one of the original contributors to New York magazine. A contributing editor to Vanity Fair since 1984, she won the Washington Journalism Review Award for Best Magazine Writer in America for her in-depth character portraits of national and international leaders.

Sheehy is a seven-time recipient of the New York Newswomen's Club Front Page Award for distinguished journalism. Among her other bestsellers are Sex and the Seasoned Woman; Hillary's Choice; New Passages; Understanding Men's Passages; and Passages in Caregiving.

A popular lecturer, she is represented by American Program Bureau (617-614-1607).

She currently resides in New York City.

Customer Reviews

Sheehy is very insightful.
Love to read
The content is not bad, it just takes so damn long to get to the point.
Floccinaucinihilipilification
Its a good book for any person who is going through life changes.
BBurns

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 44 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 23, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Sheehy offers an interesting categorization of life stages in the context of American life as she has known it and lived it. She uses excerpts from the hundreds of interviews she conducted throughout the United States while preparing this book to prove her theory. Her stages have catchy labels: Tryout Twenties, Turbulent Thirties, Flourishing Forties, Flaming Fifties, Serene Sixties. Sheehy's attempt to make meaning of the mature years is most likely to become an artifact of its era, unable to cross cultures or time. Her passages depend too heavily on life as it is being lived in the 1990s in the United States of America. With the work of Erikson and Jung on developmental aging already on the book shelf and thoughtful contributions by such as Friedan, Schacter-Shalomi and Miller, and others, Sheehy's contribution is disappointing.
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46 of 49 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 7, 2000
Format: Paperback
"New Passages" gave me added enthusiasm as well as an explanation for what I, a woman at age 50, am feeling and experiencing. How wonderful that I am metamorphosing into a "second adulthood!" That the last few years of culling out what I don't want to do are leading towards a powerful purpose: living the rest of my life with ever-greater meaning and enjoyment. As with "The Silent Passage," which has given so many men and women a healthier perspective of menopause, "New Passages" has helped define a brighter and more exciting future for all of us who are growing into our 50'and beyond. Even my 86 year old mother understands better where she has been in her "2nd adulthood," enabling her to define the significance of her continuing life....to just live in integrity and serve as an example for all those around her. Sheehy quoted research which shows that our genetic heritage profoundly affects us until 60-65....but, after that, what we think and beleve is what most profoundly affects how well we live. As in golf, "the game" is controlled by the 6" between our ears....
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43 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Floccinaucinihilipilification on October 20, 2003
Format: Paperback
Conceptually excellent, but a dismally dreary read.
Ever been at a cocktail party where you meet someone who tells an interesting story, but takes half an hour to do it, because of all the needless peripheral information. Sheehy personified. She fails to hold my attention with tediously drawn-out examples which lack pith and focus. An good editor would halve the length and double the value. The content is not bad, it just takes so damn long to get to the point.
Very Ameri-centric.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 31, 2003
Format: Paperback
I found Sheehy's second "Passages" book almost as good as the first. As an aging baby boomer, the issues of recharting my life direction at middle age has been daunting to say the least. Second Passages provided the structure for this process. I also suggest "The Second Journey" by T. Athey as another good book - more focus on the issues of the Baby Boomer generation.
Platonix
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 7, 1999
Format: Paperback
Half way reading this book, and I had to give it a thumbs up already. Sheehy's analysis and narrative is hard hitting and brilliant. Your very life passage is written out in this book. Virtually everyone will identify with at least one of her narratives/passages. A must read for anyone interested in the philosophical aspects of LIFE!
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Format: Kindle Edition
Firstly this was printed in 1995 and it is a GREAT piece of vivid sociology in the tradition of W.E.B. dubois. BUT, the internet gets one sentence. There is no 9/11, organic foods, school massacres, GLBT rights, Obama, multi-racial people, cougars, MILF, porn, Monica Lewinsky, DNA testing, animal rights, rights of endangered species, rise of China, rise of mass branding, rise of child and infants being murdered , global conciousness, war on women's reproductive rights, autism or updated fertility information for women of all ages. This book is severely dated. Gail's main interviewees are 95% wealthy, famous and white.

The BAD? Gail's attacks on older women who become mothers is not only inept and NASTY it is contradicted and sexist when in another chapter she FAWNS over a 44 year old film industry guy for doing the same thing! While I concur that it's important to plan your family accordingly with fertility, Gail attacks women in their '40s who want to become pregnant-naturally or with ivf. Verbatim it is only understandable to her if a couple had "an only child earlier in their married life and then the child died leaving them childless in their 40s." !! "Vietnam Generation" and "Me Generation" women were not as healthy as child bearing women over 35 are today. Women born after 1965 are or have been getting pregnant easily and naturally later in life, delivering healthy babies without IVF and with ease compared with previous generations. Anyone who is sexually active and still getting regular periods can get pregnant and have a healthy baby naturally. That has been true throughout history. Lucille Ball had both her kids back to back in her 40s). IVF has improved dramatically and countless women in their 20s have used it alongside women over 40. There is no comparison.
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24 of 31 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 12, 1999
Format: Paperback
Gail Sheehy provides a new perspective on aging...yet she repeats the same points continuously throughout the book. You get the main idea of her whole book in the prologue and learn nothing more after. If you are under 40 this will bore and depress you like nothing else.
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